Video of New 16th Street Mall Attack Shows Cops Arriving Late, Busting No One
A screen capture from a new video showing an assault on the 16th Street Mall. Additional images, the complete clip and more below.
Update: A late-June video of a pipe-wielding man attacking several people on the 16th Street Mall went viral and raised new questions about crime and violence in the area days after a new safety plan was instituted; see our previous coverage below.
Just over a month later, a new video has surfaced of another assault in the area — and the full-length clip shows the lead-up to a punch-out that left a man temporarily unconscious, as well as the perpetrators avoiding the police, only to resurface a minute or so later. No arrests were made, and the only repercussions for one of the men at the center of the action was a smack from an unhappy woman with him.
The video was captured at about 11 p.m. on Wednesday, August 3, by Terry Darnell from a fourth-floor apartment near 16th and Stout and obtained by 7News. However, the station only aired a small portion of the clip. The entire video, shared on YouTube by Neal Rigga and on view here, lasts just over seven and a half minutes and offers greater insight into aggressive behavior that appears to be going unchecked despite additional law enforcement presence on the mall.
At the outset of the video, a group of young people has gathered, with a blond, shirtless male making threatening gestures toward another man. Then, at about the 43-second mark, a third man gets involved, grabbing the victim....
...and wrestling him to the ground.
The victim stands, and there's more milling around for a few moments. But then the victim runs, pursued by several others.
At around the 1:20 mark, the victim is slugged, as seen in the image at the top of this post.
After the victim hits the ground, he's punched twice more....
...even though he appears to be out cold.
Over the next two minutes or so, the various parties circle the victim and bystanders come along to observe, including one person with a frantically barking dog.
Around the 3:26 mark, the first police vehicle can be seen entering the picture, followed by several others — both cruisers and motorcycles. As they approach, the vast majority of the people in the frame — attackers, the victim and others — can be seen casually walking away.
The police circle for around two and a half minutes before departing without taking anyone into custody. Once the officers are gone, a number of the video's stars re-materialize, including the blond man, who can be see taking a shot....
...from a woman with him at the 6:47 mark.
As we've reported, the Downtown Denver Partnership has announced that it will be adding private security guards to the mall as a supplement to the number of officers already patrolling there.
7News has reported that the guards should be on duty by mid-August, but a source tells us it's likely to be later than that. However, it's hoped they'll be hired and on the job by month's end.
Whether they'll make a difference is an open question, particularly in light of the latest video. See it below, followed by our previous coverage of the pipe-attack video.
Update, 12:03 p.m. June 30: The Denver Police Department has released the name of a man arrested on the 16th Street Mall for attacking several people with a piece of PVC pipe — an incident caught on video shared in this post.
An image from a video shot by Caleb Bonham. The clip and more below.
Clarence Seeley, 32, is being held for investigation of aggravated assault.
The department adds that a man suffered a head laceration from the attack, but he refused medical treatment.
The DPD is also investigating the possibility that Seeley was involved in a separate assault that preceded the one recorded by commentator and consultant Caleb Bonham. Details of that matter aren't being shared yet "to protect the integrity of the investigation," a department release states. For the same reason, Seeley's booking photo is currently being withheld. However, a probable cause statement has been shared. See it following our previous coverage.
Original report, 6:41 a.m.: Just days after we published a three-part series about violence on the 16th Street Mall, including a firsthand account of a violent stabbing that had gotten very little press coverage, Denver officials announced a new safety plan for the mall.
The plan, which was scheduled to go into effect this week at a reported cost of $396,000, calls for a tripling of Denver police officers patrolling the mall.
But it didn't prevent a shocking daylight attack early yesterday evening that was caught on video by a frequent Fox News commentator, Caleb Bonham.
Just over eleven hours after Bonham shared the clip on his Facebook page, it's been viewed by nearly one million people — and it's on view below.
A CSU graduate who lives in Denver, Bonham is the co-founder of D/CO Consulting, whose website notes that it "helps clients leverage influence and direct conversation in the corporate and political space. We’ve worked with Fortune 100 companies, U.S. Senators, nonprofits, and international public relations firms to influence public opinion through targeted data-driven communications, coalition development, and the creation of emotionally engaging content."
D/CO Consulting's home page features a smiling portrait of Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.
Bonham is also a familiar figure to Fox News viewers. Here's a clip in which he talks about the number of Harvard students who said America is a bigger threat to world peace than ISIS.
Cut to yesterday, when Bonham posted the aforementioned video, in which a man can be seen swinging a length of PVC pipe and striking a number of individuals outside a McDonald's located near the intersection of 16th and Cleveland Place. Bonham captured the images from an office above the scene.
Here's how he introduced it.
WARNING VIOLENT FOOTAGE: This is the crap that is going on in downtown Denver, Colorado. The 16th Street Mall is unpatrolled and people are getting hurt. This is why I am posting this. Nothing is being done. The leaders in our city keep saying they are going to do something. When?
We called 911 immediately and I pray those injured in this video recover fully! I am tired of seeing people get hurt and I love my city too much to see it go down like this.
The Denver Police Department stresses that police officers quickly arrived on the scene and took the man with the pipe into custody; he has yet to be identified. The people struck by the pipe were not seriously injured.
Nonetheless, the video went viral with stunning rapidity and prompted a slew of comments from Bonham's Facebook followers. A post that reads "How many people would have gotten hurt if just one person was legally carrying a firearm and dropped this punk in a pool of his own blood?" has received more than 2,500 likes at this writing.
A more Colorado-centric view was expressed by this writer: "Man up and do something. You can't wait for police. Not all of us here in the shithole of Denver are liberal hipster pussies. But those of us that aren't don't hang out on the 16th Street Mall, either."
This is not the kind of publicity city officials were hoping to attract when they announced the 16th Street Mall safety plan. Here's the video.
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